1. Farewell, Lil Peep
Lil Peep, a musician who rose to prominence over the last two years—blending rap, emo, trap and pop—has passed away at just 21 years old. Peep (born Gustav Ahr) recorded most of his songs in his DTLA bedroom, many of which explored mental health issues, vulnerabilities, sexuality, drug use and—of course—love. His open, sometimes blunt, approach struck a chord with fans—many of whom credit him with helping them through their own struggles. At such a young age, Lil Peep has left behind a significant legacy.
2. Kickstarter Launches Drip for Artists Seeking Support
Launching with 64 artists (including CH favorite Shantell Martin) Drip is Kickstarter’s new artist support platform. The crowdfunding giant purchased Drip—originally a service for musicians—last year. Now, it will enable sponsors to invest in the careers of artists. In exchange, “backers get access to a fuller picture of the artist’s process, including studio visits, field notes, and advance access to shows and work,” according to Artnet. As Kickstarter has mentioned, their flagship platform is very much about projects; Drip is about people. Read more at Artnet.
3. Another Side of Grace Jones in New Documentary “Bloodlight and Bami”
In filmmaker Sophie Fiennes’ latest documentary, “Bloodlight and Bami,” the auteur follows icon Grace Jones. For five years, Fiennes captured Jones’ charm and power, but also insights into her rarely seen sides—for example, time at home with family in Jamaica. Even Grace Jones super-fans will find something new here. As Anna Cafolla puts it, “There is never a question though as to which side is more authentic, or more real.” Read an interview with Sophie Fiennes at Dazed Digital.
4. Archivist Rick Prelinger’s Filmic Glimpse of Demolished New York
A captivating urban history lesson crafted from old home movies and even “process plates” from commercial films, “Lost Landscapes of New York” is an archivist’s vision of a demolished NYC. Rick Prelinger has assembled a filmic piece that explores the complexity of NYC’s developments—revealing many well-known areas before their contemporary development. From neighborhood street views in Harlem and Williamsburg to a ride through Grand Central in the ’30s and Coney Island in the ’20s, the work charts so many iconic areas and the people within—all of which have changed. “Lost Landscapes of New York” just screened at NYC’s Skirball Center and due to continued demand, it will play at the Museum of Moving Image 10-11 February 2018. Read more at the Times.
5. Finally, a Hijab-Wearing Barbie
While Mattel’s Barbie doll isn’t generally known for being progressive (from her unrealistic body to the fact that the first black Barbies still had caucasian features), the doll has recently made a positive step forward. Inspired by Ibtihaj Muhammad—a Bronze medal-winning Olympic fencer—a new Barbie doll now wears a hijab. Not only that, but the “Sheroes” collection of dolls are modeled in the image of inspiring and groundbreaking women.
6. Sleep Through Anything with the New Bose Sleepbuds
Two years ago, Hush created noise-canceling earbuds that could silence all types of sounds that disturb sleepers. With the help of a crowdfunded campaign on Indiegogo—reaching around $500,000—BOSE acquired the brand and its technology. The Sleepbud was born. Their primary function is blocking out those unwanted nighttime sounds, but they also pair with the Bose Sleep app and its accompanying alarms. A full recharge comes from the carrying case and there are tip variations for an ideal fit. Read more at the Verge—and watch their review of the original Hush products at CES 2016.
7. Unearthing Julia Gorton’s Photos of ’70s-Era CBGBs
Perhaps not as well-known as the people she photographed, Julia Gorton was a common sight at NYC’s infamous CBGBs. Photographing everybody from Blondie to Billy Idol, DEVO and Tom Verlaine, Gorton spent plenty of time with her Polaroid camera capturing some of the most charismatic characters in the club. She tells VICE, “It was very dark at CBGBs. Sometimes the photos didn’t come out the first time. Since the film was expensive, I only shot a few frames of each subject.” Now her images have been unearthed and are rolling out on Instagram. Read and see more at VICE.
8. Art Vinyl’s Nominees for Best Cover Art, 2017
Voting for Art Vinyl’s yearly competition of best cover art has just opened, and the nominees are as impressive (some surprising) as you’d expect. From recent releases like Boneface’s illustration for Queens of the Stone Age’s Villains to Jimmy Turrell and Steve Stacey’s customizable art for Beck’s Colors and Run The Jewels’ familiar hands artwork, the selections are all strong. You can vote for your favorite three online, and winners will be announced in January 2018.